How T Cells Make Sure They Have Quiet Time
All cells, like all people, need “quiet” time to function properly, and this is particularly true of T cells, one of the immune system’s main weapons. They must be ready for activation at all times, and primed to divide more rapidly than almost any cell in the body.
From Paradox to Breakthrough
Aaron Ring, MD, PhD, was hooked by a paradox. He had been studying cytokines to understand their potential to stimulate anti-tumor immunity. Though cytokines, such as interleukin-2, have been in clinical use for decades, they have historically shown only limited effectiveness. Dr. Ring was hunting for interleukins that could deliver a specific signal to activate TILs.
Yale Scientists Breach Brain Barriers to Attack Tumors
The brain is a sort of fortress, equipped with barriers designed to keep out dangerous pathogens. But protection comes at a cost: These barriers interfere with the immune system when faced with dire threats such glioblastoma, a deadly brain tumor for which there are few effective treatments.
Blavatnik Gift Will Fund Research into the Biology of Survival
Medzhitov and his research team are working to uncover the mechanisms underlying survival strategies—also known as maintenance programs—an endeavor that will both advance fundamental biology and provide new therapeutic targets to prevent and treat disease.
Genome screen uncovers new targets for cancer immunotherapy
A new genome-wide screen of 20,000 human genes in T cells have turned up several new candidates to unleash the immune system’s ability to attack a variety of tumor types, Yale Cancer Center researchers report Aug. 22 in the journal Cell.
Iwasaki Is Honored by the International Cytokine & Interferon Society
Akiko Iwasaki, PhD, Waldemar Von Zedtwitz Profesor of Immunobiology and Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology; and professor of dermatology, is a 2019 recipient of the Seymour & Vivian Milstein Award for Excellence in Interferon and Cytokine Research, given by the International Cytokine & Interferon Society (ICIS).
Yale Cancer Center Scientists Advise Caution in Immunotherapy Research
In a new study, Yale Cancer Center scientists suggest that as the number of clinical trials in cancer immunotherapy grows exponentially, some caution should be exercised as we continue to better understand the biology of these new therapeutic targets.
Cancer Center Receives Two-pronged Gift
Christine Moog and Benoit Helluy are supporting the new Yale Center for Immuno-Oncology and Yale Cancer Center’s art therapy program. They see their gift as a way both to propel the science in an area where exciting new cancer treatments appear ready to emerge, and to make battling cancer a less-stressful challenge for patients and their loved ones.
Yale Study Shows Immunotherapy Drug Helps Patients with Metastatic Melanoma
When melanoma turns metastatic, it spreads to the brain in more than 40% of patients. A study by Yale Cancer Center researchers published today in the Journal of Clinical Oncology (JCO) shows a checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy drug has meaningful benefit for these patients. The study is one of the first clinical trials aimed at treating the brain metastases with this type of cancer drug.
Hafler Is Elected to the National Academy of Medicine
David A. Hafler, MD, chair of the Department of Neurology, the William S. and Lois Stiles Edgerly Professor of Neurology, and professor of immunobiology, has been elected to the National Academy of Medicine, in recognition of his outstanding achievements in medicine.
With new genes and an electric shock, scientists turn immune cells against cancer
A promising new class of cancer treatments recruits the cells in our blood to fight tumors, using powerful gene-editing tools to transform a type of white blood cell — called a T cell — from an immune cell that normally targets bacterial or fungal infections into a living cancer drug. The genetic alterations could boost immune systems to successfully fight cancers on their own. Researchers remove T cells from patients and slip new genes into the cells. After clinicians return the modified T cells to patients, the cells, like microscopic bloodhounds, lead the immune system on the hunt for tumors.
New cancer immunotherapy drugs rapidly reach patients after approval
The majority of patients eligible for cancer immunotherapy drugs known as checkpoint inhibitors received treatment within a few months of FDA approval, according to a new Yale-led study. The finding suggests that cancer immunotherapies are adopted at a much quicker pace than is typical for newly approved medical treatments, the researchers said. However, patients receiving the therapies are older than those in the clinical trials used to evaluate them, pointing to a disconnect between research and practice that should be addressed, they noted.
Four Faculty Members Elected to the National Academy of Sciences
In recognition of their outstanding research achievements, four faculty members from the School of Medicine have been elected to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). Akiko Iwasaki, PhD; Haifan Lin, PhD; David G. Schatz, PhD; and Günter Paul Wagner, PhD, were selected for one of the world’s highest honors that can be bestowed on a scientist.